The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) says it will resist what it called unilateral increase in prices of petroleum products by the government, saying “it represents the height of insensitivity and impunity”.
In a statement by the union after a new price band of 145 Naira per litre for Premium Motor Spirit was announced by the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, the labour union said the increase was the least one had expected at this point in time.
Audacious And Cruel
“With the imposition on the citizenry of criminal and unjustifiable electricity tariff and resultant darkness and other economic challenges brought on by the devaluation of the Naira and spiralling inflation, the least one had expected at this point in time was another policy measure that would further make life more miserable for the ordinary Nigerian.
“The latest increase is the most audacious and cruel in the history of product price increase as It represents not only about 80 per cent increase but it is tied to the black market exchange rate,” the statement signed by the union’s spokesman, Dr Peter Ozo-Eson, read.
According to the union, the process through which government arrived at the increase was both illogical and illegal as the board of the PPPRA was not duly constituted.
Revert The Prices
The NLC pointed out that in its previous statements and communiques, it had stressed the need for reconstituting the boards of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and PPPRA and wean both away from the overbearing influence of the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources whom it claimed had assumed the role of a Sole Administrator.
“The allusion to the fact that the this increase was arrived at after due consultation with stake holders is not only ridiculous and fallacious, it goes to show that the brief meeting held today during which government was advised shelve the idea until at least it meets with the appropriate organs of the Congress was in bad faith.
“Accordingly, we urge the government to revert the prices to what they were. We would want to put everybody on notice that we shall resist this criminal increase with every means legitimate,” the union stated.
The union has already scheduled an emergency NEC meeting for Friday, May 13, to decide on the next line of action and requested that affiliates, state councils and civil society allies should commence mobilisation immediately.